- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 1, 2014


After a speech and a fundraiser in Chicago on Thursday afternoon, President Obama will appear at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute gala in the nation’s capital at dusk, perhaps to assure Latinos that he is not the “Deporter in Chief”, as some activist groups have called him.

Mr. Obama will, however, advise his audience that they must wait until the midterm elections are over for some changes in deportation policies. But it may be all for naught. Activists and organizers from three substantial groups will greet the president with a picket line outside the event, with “immediate relief from deportation” as their motto.

“We want action before, not after the election. There is no excuse for the President to delay reforming a deportation policy that he himself described as inhumane, and there is certainly no excuse for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to accept a new protracted timeline,” says Salvador G. Sarmiento, a spokesman for the California-based National Day Laborer Organizing Network.

“It appears the President is still relying on terrible political and legal advice when it comes to his deportation policy, and it is up to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to tell him to take action immediately. Our message is this: if the President walks into a room full of Latino leaders, he will be met with protest, not acquiescence,” Mr. Sarmiento observes.

Workers United of Washington, DC and the #Not1More Campaign will also be participating.

The Caucus itself has recently been criticized, Mr. Sarmiento says, for acquiescing to the Mr. Obama’s new timeline in a response statement released nearly two weeks after the president went back on his commitment to take action before summer’s end.

“Rather than the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the strongest response to the President’s delay came from a group of 42 Congressional Democrats who sent a letter to the President saying that it was necessary for him to meet directly with persons in deportation proceedings,” the spokesman adds.

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